Sceptre of ease! whose calm domain extends

First Line Sceptre of ease! whose calm domain extends
Author Sneyd Davies

Ode [Classical themes; Love; Historical subjects; Literature].

Transcribed from Davies, Sneyd. "Vacuna." A collection of poems in six volumes. By several hands, vol. 5, 1765, pp. 121–124. Eighteenth Century Collections Online, GALE|CW0114907817.



Sceptre of ease! whose calm domain extends

O'er the froze Chronian, or where lagging gales

Fan to repose the Southern realms. O! whom

More slaves obey than swarm about the courts

"Pekin, or "Agra—universal queen!


Me hap'ly slumb'ring all a summer's day,

Thy meanest subject, often hast thou deign'd

Gracious to visit. If thy poppy then

Was e'er infus'd into my gifted quill,

If e'er my nodding Muse was blest with pow'r,

To doze the reader with her opiate verse—

Come, goddess; but be gentle; not as when

On studious heads attendant thou art seen

Fast by the twinkling lamp, poring and pale

Immers'd in meditation, sleep's great foe;

Where the clue-guided casuist unwinds

Perplexities; or Halley from his tower

Converses with the stars: In other guise

Thy preference I invoke. Serene approach,

With forehead smooth, and saunt'ring gait; put on

The smile unmeaning, or in sober mood

Fix thy flat, musing, leaden eye: as looks

Simplicius, when he stares and seems to think.

Prompted by thee, Reservo keeps at home,

Intent on books: he when alone applies

The needle's reparation to his hose,

Or studious slices paper. Taught by thee

Dullman takes snuff, and ever and anon

Turns o'er the page unread. Others more sage,

Place, year, and printer not unnoted, well 

Examine the whole frontispiece, and if

Yet stricter their enquiry, e'en proceed 

To leaves within, and curious there select

Italics, or consult the margin, pleas'd

To find a hero or a tale: all else,

The observation, maxim, inference

Disturb the brain with thought.—It sure were long

To name thy sev'ral vot'ries, Pow'r supine, 

And all thy various haunts. Why should I speak

Of coffee-house? or where the eunuch plays,

Or Roscius in his buskin? These and more

Thy crowded temples, where thou sit'st enshrin'd

Glorious, thy incense ambergris, and time

Thy sacrifice.—About thee cards and dice

Lie scatter'd, and a thousand vassal beaux

Officiate at thy worship.—Nor mean while

Is solitude less thy peculiar sphere;

These unattended you vouchsafe to shroud

Your beauties, gentle Potentate; with me

By vale or brook to loiter not displeas'd:

Hear the stream's pebbled roar, and the sweet bee

Humming her fairy-tunes, in praise of flowers;

Or clam'rous rooks, on aged elm or oak,

Aloft the cawing legislators sit,

Debating, in full senate, points of state.


My bower, my walks, my study all are thine,

For thee my yews project their shade: my green

Spreads her soft lap, my waters whisper sleep.

Here thou may'st reign secure, nor hostile thought,

Nor argument, nor logic's dire array

Make inroad on thy kingdom's peace.—What though

Malicious tongues me harmless represent,

A traitor to thy throne: or that I hold

Forbidden correspondence with the Nine,

Plotting with Phœbus, and thy foes! What though

Of satire they impeach me, strain severe!

Thou know'st my innocence: 'tis true indeed 

I sometimes scribble, but 'tis thou inspir'st:

In proof accept, O goddess, this my verse.